BBC preps iPlayer for HD downloads

The BBC's iPlayer catch-up service is expected to add high-definition programmes for stream and download imminently

The BBC's iPlayer catch-up service is expected to add high-definition programmes for stream and download imminently.

Auntie made the announcement on the BBC News Web site earlier today, after which a BBC HD channel sporadically appeared and disappeared on the iPlayer's TV Channels page, but no HD content actually appeared available. Additionally, the URL it was pointing to (this one) simply redirected to the iPlayer's main channels page.

Problems with the launch, perhaps? We tried to contact the BBC for comment, but no-one was immediately able to respond.

Based on what the Beeb itself said, however, downloads will be offered to PC, Mac and Linux users, in addition to the HD streams delivered via modern Web browsers. The new season of Dragons' Den and the upcoming Dr Who specials will be among the programmes offered in hi-def.

Additionally, a new version of the iPlayer desktop app for Mac and Linux was released (and is available here to download) to support the HD downloads, although appears aesthetically identical to the last version.

So for now, keep your eyes peeled on the iPlayer's TV Channels page, where HD content -- hopefully -- will pop up very soon.

Update: A BBC spokesperson has told CNET UK that "a deployment issue" prevented the HD iPlayer service from going live yesterday, and that it wasn't "anything to do with the HD content itself." We'll keep you posted as to when the service will be online.

 

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